A Former Undocumented Immigrant Shares Her Story

Monday, April 15, 2013

This week, the Senate's Gang of Eight is working on a bill that promises compromise on Immigration Reform. But what do former undocumented immigrants have to say about the immigration experience? 

Sayu Bhojwani was born in India, raised in Belize and was in the United States when her visa expired – making her an undocumented immigrant. She went on to not only become an American citizen, but also also to be appointed New York City’s first Commissioner of Immigrant Affairs.

She now helps other first and second generation immigrants seek public office as the Founding Director of the New American Leaders Project. She is also a PhD candidate in Politics and Education at Columbia University’s Teachers College where she studies the role that public schools play in shaping immigrant students’ civic stance.

Bhojwani recently wrote about her immigration experience in an article for the digital news outlet Quartz.


Sayu Bhojwani

Produced by:

Jessica Miller

Comments [1]

Veronica from New York

Hi... I just listened to your story and I'm glad that stories like this are being broadcast. Sayu is absolutely right, its so easy to fallout of status even with the best intentions. I have been in the USA, brought as a teenager by my parents, and I still can't get my greencard. After being laidoff from my sponsor employer, I found myself out of status and in a panic to get back on the right side of the law. I found a job, but now I'm awaiting to get approved to work. If I don't get approved I may be faced with hard choices in an effort to stay in the US where my whole legal family lives. Immigration reform should benefit not only illegal immigrants but also those of use that have been paying taxes, staying legally here and wish to be part of the US voting system.

Apr. 15 2013 04:00 PM

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